Tag: licence checking

Take check of your drivers, or your fleet could end up in hot water.

With the lifting of coronavirus restrictions fast approaching, business owners should be prepared. According to Licence Link, the return to ‘normality’ could see a spike in driver endorsements – following the imminent reopening of nightlife and the return of commuters. Now it’s time to take stock of your drivers’ licence points or risk serious consequences.

According to figures released by DVLA, 92,000 UK drivers already have between 9 and 11 points on their driving licence, making them a high risk to employers. * This figure is only set to rise too – with motorists having racked up a hefty 1.5 million points during the first half of 2020 alone, amidst a full lockdown. **

With these figures in mind, it’s crucial to consider how your business may be affected if your staff were to incur points – whether they’re employed as a driver, have access to a grey fleet vehicle, or are insured on your fleet policy. For example, being convicted of drink driving, speeding, or using a mobile behind the wheel – even out of working hours – could result in anything from 3 points to a driving ban. From invalidating your insurance to rendering your business temporarily driverless, this could have a serious impact.

What’s more, if the employee fails to disclose this information, your business could be held liable for fines (or worse), so it’s imperative to always keep check of drivers. With Licence Link’s real-time licence checking tool, Fleet Managers can set automated checks for their workforce – reducing the risk of missed or undeclared points. They can flag high-risk drivers to check more frequently too, providing peace of mind that new endorsements will be identified quickly.

Melvin Jeffers, Sales and Customer Relations Leader at Licence Link explains:

“With thousands of employees still awaiting a return to the workplace, its inevitable HR teams will be overrun in preparation. Using Licence Link is a significant time-saver, safeguarding against the risk of missed checks. It’s so easy to make mistakes when tracking results manually, often for hundreds of drivers. For less than a few pounds per check, you can be sure your staff have a valid licence and pose no risk to your business. Your HR team can focus on other priorities, with no hassle of managing compliance.”

With the lifting of restrictions just weeks away, now’s the time for businesses to prepare – identifying high-risk drivers, checking the terms of insurance, and scheduling regular driver checks. All this can be managed seamlessly with a provider like Licence Link.

 

References for figures:

*  THISISMONEY.co.uk, 2021, ‘On the brink of a driving ban: Britain has 92,000 motorists with between 9 and 11 points on their licence – and are just one offence away from losing it.’, [online]. Available from: https://bit.ly/3hmjoGy [Accessed: 08/07/21]

** TTC Protecting people on the move, 2020, ‘Motorist speeding offences soar during lockdown’, [online]. Available from: https://bit.ly/2TEjboZ [Accessed: 08/07/21]

Free checks or false economy? Weigh up what’s best for your fleet.

Driver compliance is critical and failure to check licences can result in hefty fines for employers. According to Licence Link, buying checks from a certified provider, rather than using the free GOV.UK online service has substantial benefits – especially for busy HR teams managing several employees. Both services access driver details from the DVLA, then return these results, but what’s the difference from an employers’ view?

With the free GOV.UK checking service, employees manually apply online – they’re sent a one-time code valid for 21 days, allowing their employer to view their licence details. This relies on all drivers returning a code and the HR team following it up, which isn’t easy to track, especially for potentially hundreds of drivers. Licence Link makes it easier to manage, explains Andy Bealing, Fleet Manager, Exeter City Council:

“Licence Link’s digital checking service allows us to ensure we’re compliant with the DVLA at all times. It’s removed a number of administrative duties, giving us more time to carry out other tasks.”

For a small fee, the pressure is taken off both the business and employee. With Licence Link’s automated service, drivers can sign their consent digitally in a matter of seconds, staying valid for 3 years. It saves hours of admin time – which can end up costing significantly more than a few pounds for a check. Unlike the GOV.UK checks, Licence Link provides a full audit trail, including any past checks.

Employers can schedule routine checks as frequently as they like in Licence Link, with results returned in real-time. Again, this isn’t possible with the GOV.UK service. This makes it simple to keep watch of any new endorsements, which without attention could result in severe consequences – from invalidated insurance to driver downtime to breaking the law. Nicola Bradshaw at Cheshire West and Chester Borough Council explains:

“The reports in Licence Link are very useful, keeping us on top of driver risk. They save us time, providing all the relevant information we need to fulfil our roles successfully and efficiently.”

Ultimately, for any sizeable fleet there are stand-out benefits of using a provider like Licence Link – saving time, relieving pressure, and gaining a trackable record. Free checks are (on the surface) cheaper, but when managing more than a handful of drivers, the process can quickly become more time consuming and costly on a check-by-check basis. It’s essential to weigh up the cost to check versus the time taken by your HR team to manage the process.

Do future drivers fit the bill beyond their CV?

Good fit for the team? Got the qualifications? Questions like this are commonly asked when interviewing. Although… did you check the driving licence? According to Licence Link, employers often overlook driver licence checking during interview stage which can result in extra costs, driver downtime and even breaking the law.

Fleet and HR Managers should be taking precautions when hiring to save time and money in the long-term, by incorporating licence checks before offering a job. Candidates may hold back information if not asked to take a licence check, and if an employee commits a driving offence whilst holding a critical level of points, this can have serious consequences for a business.

Refer to your insurance policy! It’s often outlined that drivers mustn’t exceed a certain level of points, meaning a business could face legal consequences – in addition to invalidating their policy. It is also critical to ensure candidates have the right licence for the role. Candidates claiming to have driven a Category C vehicle could have mistaken it for a C1 – a vital error, capable of invalidating insurance. Melvin Jeffers, Sales and Customer Relations leader at Licence Link explains:

“It’s your duty as a business to ensure all drivers have a valid licence, right for the job. Regardless of the CV or candidate, checking their licence beforehand safeguards your business. Why risk the consequences when each check costs less than a coffee?” 

Licence Link helps businesses stay on top of compliance, with results returned in real-time, making it a quick and easy process:

It saves time and provides the relevant information we need to fulfil roles successfully and efficiently” explains Licence Link customer at Cheshire West & Chester Borough Council.

Licence checking should be part of the hiring process, ideally followed by regular maintenance checks. You wouldn’t buy a dangerous car so why hire someone who puts your business at risk? It’s a small price to pay!

Licence Link takes the hassle out of handling licence renewals

Keeping on top of licence checking is a time consuming, yet critical, task for fleet businesses, ensuring that every driver they employ is in possession of a full, valid driving licence to comply with the DVLA and the law.

The issues surrounding COVID-19 meant that the DVLA provided an 11-month extension period on driving licences due to expire between 1st February and 31st December 2020. This has complicated the tracking of expiry dates for potentially hundreds of employers, fleets that track records manually or where systems don’t account for the extension.

Licence Link removes the hassle and confusion of keeping check of driver data across the fleet – automating the entire process and saving hours of admin time. Automated reminders can be set up easily to flag upcoming licence renewals via the DVLA for company drivers.

Once a driver has been added to the Licence Link system and they’ve electronically signed to approve checks, the employer will be notified when each licence is due for renewal. Working closely with the DVLA, Licence Link accounts for the 11-month extension period, enabling the admin team to notify drivers in advance of the correct renewal date.

In addition to reminders, businesses can schedule automatic alerts – triggering frequent licence checks on an ongoing basis, to keep on top of any penalties, fines or disqualifications employees may acquire. This eases the risk of businesses unknowingly allowing employees to drive with an invalid licence, and the associated consequences.

Get in touch to see how Licence Link can help reduce risk and save time for your fleet!

 

 

 

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